A photo of Durban, South Africa.
i read something dismaying in the news today.
apparently Durban, South Africa -- one of the largest cities in South Africa, with a thriving tourism industry -- is seriously considering a temporary legalization of prostitution.
but wait. WHY are they considering it?
because in the year 2010, two years from now, they are hosting the 2010 World Cup football event.
based on what i read, they are talking about legalizing prostitution "temporarily" while the football event takes place. and that's pathetic. why is it pathetic? two glaring reasons spring to mind.
first, World Cup football involves and attracts a huge number of MALES. can men find nothing better to do with their leisure time than basically degrade and abuse women for paid sex? is it not enough to travel to South Africa and watch world-class sports? they have to have some prostitutes in their down-time as well? really, guys? REALLY?
second, and more importantly, South Africa as a nation is one of the world's hardest-hit by HIV and AIDS. it's been estimated that there are five million people in South Africa that are HIV-positive. and THIS is the place that thinks temporarily legalizing prostitution for the benefit of football fans is a good idea?
it is (apparently) a fact that the sex industry thrives in whatever area/city hosts a major sporting event such as the World Cup. yes, as i've recently read, it's a fact.
but does that make it right?
there is, of course, opposition to this proposal in Durban, but no firm decision has been made as of the time of my writing this. it is clearly being considered, and considered seriously.
earlier this year an MP named George Lekgetho called for prostitution to be legalized during Durban's World Cup tournament and said: "It is one of the things that would make it a success."
is the World Cup no longer a draw on its own? will no one go unless the place also offers legal prostitution?
i read that this is not the first time legalizing prostitution has been on the table in Durban. the concept was also proposed last year by Durban's Police Commissioner, who is no longer the police commissioner due to corruption charges.
is this the way of the future? legally renting [mostly] young women to the highest bidder for random, degrading sex acts?
more people should care.
it doesn't matter that it's in South Africa, far from where we live. people should be disturbed.